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FOUR CRIES FROM HELL

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles
Lord’s Day Evening, August 5, 2012

“And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried...” (Luke 16:23, 24).


This sermon was adapted and revised from “A Journey Through the Halls of Hell” by Dr. W. Herschel Ford, in Simple Sermons on Salvation and Service, Zondervan Publishing House, 1971 edition.

Here is a man in Hell. He is now in torments greater than he could ever have imagined. We are told that “he cried.” This means that he “cried out.”

If we could go to Hell this evening, we would hear thousands of souls crying out, “wailing and gnashing [their] teeth” (Matthew 13:42). Let us go down into Hell in our minds and see some of the people groaning and crying out there in the flames.

I. First, we hear Cain crying, “My punishment is greater than I can bear.”

He cries again and again, “My punishment is greater than I can bear” (Genesis 4:13). Why is Cain there in the flames of Hell? It is not because he was a murderer. Moses was a murderer, but he is now in Heaven. David was a murderer, but he is now in Heaven. The Apostle Paul was a murderer, but he is now in Heaven. Why, then, is Cain in the eternal flames crying out forever, “My punishment is greater than I can bear”? Why is Cain in Hell, while other murderers are in Heaven?

Cain is in Hell because he refused to be saved by the Blood. There was no blood in his sacrifice. He tried to be saved by reforming his life and being good. But God refused his worthless offering. God said,

“Without shedding of blood is no remission” (Hebrews 9:22).

Christ shed His precious Blood on the Cross to atone for sin, and cleanse the sinner from all unrighteousness. The only way to escape from Hell is through the Blood of Christ. But Cain was too proud to believe in the Blood. That is why he is in Hell. That is why he cries out for all eternity, “My punishment is greater than I can bear.”

The preacher spoke on the fifth commandment, “Honour thy father and thy mother” (Exodus 20:12). The preacher spoke on the sin of hating one’s father. Three young men had committed that sin. Two of them went and asked their father to forgive them, and promised to live a better life. But the third one came to Jesus and was washed clean by His Blood before he confessed to his father. The third boy was saved. But the two others remained lost, hardened in rebellion. Why? Because, “without shedding of blood is no remission.”

What can wash away my sin?
   Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
What can make me whole again?
   Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
(“Nothing But the Blood” by Robert Lowry, 1826-1899).

It is very common for those under conviction of sin to try to find relief by reforming their lives. But that is the religion of Cain – a bloodless offering of human works. The person who changes his life, without faith in the Blood of Jesus, will cry out with Cain in Hell, “My punishment is greater than I can bear.”

Nothing can for sin atone –
   Nothing but the blood of Jesus;
Naught of good that I have done –
   Nothing but the blood of Jesus.
Oh! precious is the flow
   That makes me white as snow;
No other fount I know,
   Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

“And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments...And he cried...”
       (Luke 16:23, 24).

II. Second, we hear the people in Noah’s day crying, “Let us in! Let us in!”

The people in Noah’s day were lost sinners. Noah was saved by grace and built an ark to preserve himself and his family from the great Flood. Noah preached to the people as he prepared the ark. The Apostle Peter called Noah “a preacher of righteousness” (II Peter 2:5). But the people laughed at him. They had never even seen rain, much less a flood. Then the Flood came, and the water began to rise. The water rose higher and higher. Those unbelieving sinners undoubtedly ran to the ark, and beat on the door, crying, “Let us in! Let us in!” But it was too late for them to enter in! The Bible says of Noah, “The Lord shut him in” (Genesis 7:16). God had shut the door to the ark, and sealed it shut. It was too late for them to be saved. All of them drowned in the great Flood..

These people had resisted the call of God too long. They fiddled and played, and procrastinated. They put off their salvation too long. Are you like that tonight?

Not long ago I preached to a group of nearly 200 people. Four or five of them were saved. But all the others were focused on their business, sports, and entertainment. That is a picture of the world tonight. We preach to them. We warn them. We tell them about salvation in Christ. But most of them go on with their lives, and do not trust the Saviour. They forget that “it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). If you die without being saved by Christ, you will soon be in Hell, crying out with those people in Noah’s day, “Let us in! Let us in! Let us in!” But it will be too late for you in Hell. The door to salvation will be closed to you forever.

“And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments...And he cried.”

III. Third, we hear Judas crying, “I have betrayed innocent blood.”

As our minds go down into the bowels of Hell, we hear Judas screaming over and over, “I have betrayed...innocent blood” (Matthew 27:4).

Christ chose this man to be one of His twelve Disciples. Judas was with Him for three years. He heard Christ preach. He saw Christ perform great miracles. He served as the treasurer of the Disciples. But he went to Hell because he remained unsaved.

You can go to church every Sunday, go to soul winning, and give generously and still be lost. You are lost because you never trusted Christ, and were never converted. There must be an inner change that only God can give. You must be born again.

But Judas loved money so much that he sold his soul for it.. Yet the money he got did not make him happy. He threw away the money they gave him for betraying Christ. But it was too late. God had given up on him. He went out, hanged himself, and went to Hell. I can hear him screaming there in the flames, “I have betrayed innocent blood! I have betrayed innocent blood!” Judas might have been saved, but now it is too late forever.

“And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments...And he cried.”

IV. Fourth, we hear King Agrippa crying, “Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.”

He cries out, “Almost! Almost! Almost!” He is not a king now. The Apostle Paul witnessed to him. But he rejected Christ. He said to Paul, “Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian” (Acts 26:28). He was almost converted, but he waited too long.

It is not enough to hear the Gospel preached. It is not even enough to believe the Gospel in your mind. You must surrender to Jesus, and trust Him, to be saved. King Agrippa was almost convinced to trust Jesus. But he put it off until it was too late. I have seen people like that across the years. They listened attentively to the preaching. Some of them even had tears in their eyes. But they shook off their convictions, and forgot all about salvation. Agrippa might have been saved. But now it is too late forever. It seems I can hear him screaming in Hell, “Almost! Almost! Almost!” as he writhes in the flames forever.

“Almost persuaded” now to believe;
    “Almost persuaded” Christ to receive;
Seems now some soul to say,
    “Go, Spirit, go Thy way,
Some more convenient day
   On Thee I’ll call.”

“Almost persuaded,” harvest is past!
    “Almost persuaded,” doom comes at last!
“Almost” cannot avail; “Almost” is but to fail!
   Sad, sad, that bitter wail,
“Almost” – but lost.
    (“Almost Persuaded” by Philip P. Bliss, 1838-1876).

You too have been almost persuaded. You say in your heart, “Someday I will trust Jesus. Someday I will come to Him and be washed clean by His Blood.” But there is great danger in saying, “Someday.” Satan has told you to wait a little longer. The Devil knows that he will get you if you keep waiting and putting off your salvation. But one of these days death will slip up on you. You won’t be ready, and it will be too late forever. It seems that I can hear you crying out in Hell with Agrippa, “Almost! Almost! Almost!”

May God have mercy on you now, while there is still time. I pray that you will trust Jesus in simple faith. I pray that your sins will be washed clean by His precious Blood now, before God gives up on you, and it is said of you,

“...in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments...And he cried,”

“Almost! Almost! Almost!”

Then how sad facing judgment you’ll recall with no mercy,
   That you tarried and lingered till the Spirit was gone;
What reproaches and mourning, if when death finds you hopeless,
   You have tarried and lingered and have waited too long.
(“If You Linger Too Long” by Dr. John R. Rice, 1895-1980).

How we pray that you will trust Jesus tonight, so your sins can be cleansed by His precious Blood! I am going to sing that song by Dr. Rice again. If you are ready to trust Christ and be saved, please go to the back of the room while I sing. Dr. Cagan will take you to a quiet place where we can counsel you and pray with you. You go while I sing.

You have waited so flippantly, refused Him so lightly,
   You have sinned long and dreadfully, your heart is so wrong;
Oh, if God grows impatient, the sweet Spirit offended,
   If no longer He calls you, doom is yours when He’s gone.
Then how sad facing judgment you’ll recall with no mercy,
   That you tarried and lingered till the Spirit was gone;
What reproaches and mourning, if when death finds you hopeless,
   You have tarried and lingered and have waited too long.

(END OF SERMON)
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at www.realconversion.com. Click on “Sermon Manuscripts.”

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write to him at P.O. Box 15308, Los Angeles, CA 90015. Or phone him at (818)352-0452.

Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: Matthew 13:47-50.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“If You Linger Too Long” (by Dr. John R. Rice, 1895-1980).


THE OUTLINE OF

FOUR CRIES FROM HELL

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

“And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried...” (Luke 16:23, 24).

(Matthew 13:42)

I.   First, we hear Cain crying, “My punishment is greater than I can bear,”
Genesis 4:13; Hebrews 9:22; Exodus 20:12.

II.  Second, we hear the people in Noah’s day crying, “Let us in!
Let us in!” II Peter 2:5; Genesis 7:16; Hebrews 9:27.

III. Third, we hear Judas crying, “I have betrayed innocent blood,”
Matthew 27:4.

IV. Fourth, we hear King Agrippa crying, “Almost thou persuadest me
to be a Christian,” Acts 26:28.